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Quarterback Watch Report - Week 3
Scott Boyter
September 19, 2006
Top Ten Fantasy QB’s to own Comment
1 IND Peyton Manning Manning's unbelievable outing against the horrible Texan pass defense probably won a whole lot of fantasy games last week. He'll still be big against the Jaguars at home, really big. Even with a running "attack" that's so far been little more than an afterthought.
2 CIN Carson Palmer That's more like it, Carson. Way to prove yourself worthy of the No. 2 ranking by carving up the Browns. Don't expect huge numbers against the wicked Steeler defense, but you need to run Palmer out every week, no matter the matchup.
3 PHI Donovan McNabb McNabb re-established himself as a 100 percent fantasy stud against the Giants. He's shot back up the charts and once again become a no-brainer start every week, regardless of matchup. And he's got a tasty one this week on the road against the 49ers.
4 NYG Eli Manning Manning, as well, has carved his niche as an elite fantasy quarterback. Don't look for a letdown this week, but don't look for huge numbers, either, against the stout Seattle D. But unless you've got one of the Top 3 guys, Manning appears to be another guy you need to start no matter the opponent.
5 NE Tom Brady Brady has quickly slipped out of the Top 3, and a further fall is lurking. Denver has been tough against the pass, at least the first two weeks. The two positives in Brady's favor are the game is at home and he may have created a strong chemistry with young WR Chad Jackson.
6 CHI Rex Grossman

Give the guy some credit. He's ranked No. 5 in the league in yards and is tied for first in TD passes. He's done enough so far to merit Top 10 status on this list, but the opposition (Green Bay, Detroit) has been far from salty. Let's see what happens for Grossman on the road against an aroused Minnesota defense.

7 AZ Kurt Warner His numbers slipped against the Seahawks, but that's going to happen to a lot of very good QBs, especially in Seattle. Look for a rebound at home against the Rams. Arizona's new stadium has quickly gained the appearance of being a pit for opposing teams. Don't take lightly the benefit for Arizona of feeling that they finally have a real home. Start Warner this week and don't think twice.
8 DAL Drew Bledsoe Bledsoe picked apart a Redskin D that had looked pretty stout the week before against the Vikings. And don't worry about the injury to T.O. Bledsoe has plenty of weapons to tear up the Titans in Week 4 (after Dallas' bye this week), and Owens will probably return against the Eagles.
9 NYJ Chad Pennington You can't discount his first two games, but, like Grossman, his big numbers were as much a function of the ineptitude of the opposing pass defenses (Tennessee, New England) as anything. If he can post a similar performance against Buffalo on the road, then you can make a case for Pennington remaining on this list all season, as long as his throwing shoulder holds up.
10 SEA Matt Hasselbeck OK, Matt. This is your last chance to remain on this list. Yeah, like he really cares. But seriously, he HAS to post a 275-yard, two-TD game against the Giants or he will slip out of fantasy relevance. Don't bank on it, as the arrival of Deion Branch revitalizes Hasselbeck.

(Note – this listing considers the rankings of QB’s if a draft was held today)

Climbing Up The Ladder

Brett Favre (GB) - Give it up for the old man. He was huge against the Saints, albeit in a starting role for maybe 10 percent of the fantasy teams in America. Detroit was torched on the road against Chicago, but stymied Seattle at home. And this week the Pack travels to Motown. Beware.

Drew Brees (NO) - Brees was great against the Pack, and Monday plays in one of the most emotionally-charged games in the history of the NFL as the Saints finally play a home game in New Orleans. He could be fantastic, or be so revved up that he spits the bit. The bet here will be on the former. Unless your No. 1 has a no-brainer matchup, all we are saying is give Brees a chance.
Sorry about that.

Alex Smith (SF) - Another case of giving credit where it's due. He's averaged 260 yards and a score in his first two games.
And with a real running attack and good weapons in Antonio Bryant and Vernon Davis, Smith could be on the edge of becoming a fantasy threat. Hold off putting him in your lineup, however, until after he faces Philly this week.

Sliding Back

Chris Simms (TB) - So far, he's the poster boy of futility. Pretty soon the fans in Tampa Bay will be calling him "Christy."
He's one bad game, maybe a bad quarter, from riding some serious pine.

Aaron Brooks (OAK) - There's a new definition for "The Black Hole" in Oakland, and it is the Raider offense. And to add to the misery, Brooks has a bad shoulder. It absolutely can't get any worse. Or can it?

Kerry Collins (TEN) - Let the countdown to the full-time Vince Young Era begin.

Ben Roethlisberger (PIT) - Not exactly the best way to start the season, was it? The Steeler defense can't expect to beat Cincinnati by themselves. Big Ben will have to step up, and fast.

Byron Leftwich (JAX) - Not that putrid numbers are a surprise agianst a defense as good as Pittsburgh's, but you've got to do better than that. Like Roethilsberger, Leftwich will have to really heat up for Jacksonville to have a chance against the Colts on the road.